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Ovation: Oz Comes To Farnsworth In Rockland, Maine.


Farnsworth 2One of my favorite movies when I was a child was The Wizard of Oz.  I remember that, periodically, it would be broadcast on television and I would look forward to it every time.  For a youngster, it was a very long movie and quite a commitment.  I remember that it was often on Sunday evenings that we had the opportunity to see the movie and it would begin right after dinner when we were still at my grandmother’s house.  I always missed a section in the middle of the movie as we drove home during the evening.  Fortunately, it was usually the scary part with the flying monkeys so I really didn’t mind.

A new exhibit opened on Saturday at the Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland, Maine, where fans of the movie got a look at Dorothy’s blue gingham dress, a pair of her ruby slippers and even a flying monkey.  The one hundred seven-piece display includes these items and more from the world’s largest Wizard of Oz collection.  The exhibit includes rare first-print copies of the original book by L Frank Baum, movie posters and an array of Oz memorabilia.

HourGlassThe exhibit, which runs through March, consists of items from the collection of Willard Carroll, a filmmaker from nearby Camden who owns the items with his longtime partner.  Carroll, 57, has collected the more than 100,000 Oz items since he first became obsessed with the story at the age of ten.

The story of The Wizard of Oz story has endured for more than a century and is entertaining another new audience this year with the release of the 1939 movie in 3D and the approach of the movie’s 75th anniversary.  Oz the Great and Powerful, a prequel to the 1939 film that explores the origins of the wizard, was released this year, and the hit musical Wicked continues to run on Broadway.

The museum exhibit will certainly bring back memories for anybody who’s watched the movie.  Apparently, it contains a bit of trivia, too.  Did you know, for example, that the Wicked Witch’s hourglass was filled with strawberry Jell-O in the movie because back then the sand couldn’t be dyed red?

Interestingly, the exhibit points out the fact that the movie was shown annually on television for more than three decades, creating memories for generations of Americans.  But it doesn’t mention the parts that were missed during the drive home from Grandmas house on Sunday evenings.

Are you a fan of The Wizard of Oz?


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From → Ovations

  1. yes I am, and have been since I was a young queerling.


  2. Rick permalink

    I LOVE OZ!! A magical place with diverse cultures and beautiful colors…….I always wanted to visit…..Maybe someday


  3. Way back in the early 80s I actually left The Engineer at an after work get together so I could drive home and watch it. Our kids love it too.


  4. I used to look forward to the annual showing of this wonderful movie on TV. I remember the first time I saw it, I thought it would be boring because it starts in black & white. But then the colors come in & they are so vibrant at first it almost takes your breath away!


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